Friday, May 30, 2014

"There's no place like home"

          There is no place in the world like America. I have had the privilege to see much of this world and its splendor. There is such dignity and character offered to those who dwell there. Many mysteries surround the earth and I must confess I have often been intrigued. However, there “aint no place like home!” No nation has been as blessed as this place; it is without discussion that we have been bountifully blessed by God.

                There are few places in the world where people wait for years to leave their homelands, and leave it all for the opportunity to live in the United States. It is not perfect, it is not what it used to be, but it still is the best place on earth.

We are special, some call it exceptional! We are great because we were formed by God for a divine purpose.

               Only twice in the history of mankind have a people been called together to form a new nation, a new people by the direct call and purpose of the Almighty God: Israel and America.

               Christopher Columbus, in his “Book of Prophecies,” wrote “It was the Lord who put into my mind the journey. I could feel his hand upon me... there was no doubt or question that inspiration was from the Holy Spirit because he comforted me with rays of marvelous illumination from the Holy was the fulfillment of what Isaiah had prophesied the feat that the gospel must still be preached in so many nations is what convinces me.” Unbelievable.

               When the pilgrims gathered off the shore of Massachusetts, they wrote their manifesto- that this new land was dedicated to the glory of God!

               To the gainsayer, that criticizes our exceptions. Beware, you will never make America a socialistic, Islamic, Hindu, or Buddhist nation. All religions are welcome to come under the umbrella of our freedom, only because we are without a doubt, a Christian nation. May it always be so.

See ya Sunday!



Thursday, May 15, 2014

Finding Forgiveness

Every road had two directions.  In our lives it is so much the truth.  So often as a pastor and as a counselor, I see those who blame others for their problems and circumstances.  Their philosophy is everything I do is someone else’s fault.  And in the other direction, there are those laden down with guilt.

I believe one of the great maladies of our day is the guilt that many bear.  An old legend has it that after Pilate betrayed Jesus, he went to Switzerland and climbed a high mountain and jumped to his death.  Even to this day, the mountain is called Mt. Pelatmos, which means Pilate.  Legend says that, at that mountain, you can hear the voice of Pilate moaning, trying to rid himself of the guilt.

That is legend.  However, there are many who suffer from guilt.  We, in America, have managed to rename sin, but we haven’t an idea of what to do with guilt.  Some go to the psychologist.  Some forgive themselves.  Some blame others.  And sad, but true, some turn to alcohol, drugs, or even suicide.  The Bible says in I John 1:9, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”

Friend, if you are under a load of guilt God can and will forgive.  Life is to be enjoyed, not endured.  Find strength in His grace.  May God help you as you journey.

See ya Sunday!


Thursday, May 8, 2014

Celebrating Mothers

Its Mother's Day this weekend, and I wanted to say a word about the mothers in our nation.  Personally, I am grateful for the wonderful, godly Mom that God allowed me to have.  My mind is filled with the blessings of growing up under her good influence.

She only attended school until the eighth grade.  Her father died and she quit school to tend to the house and take care of the duties at home.  She is the youngest of eight children.  I know that many feel this same way, but to me, my Mom is the best.  They just don't come any better than her.  Tender, kind, compassionate, and understanding just barely describe how good a woman she is.

When I was a child, she scolded me when I did wrong, and then she tenderly hugged me and told me it was for my good.

After summer vacation she, more that anyone else, looked forward to school starting up again.  My brothers and I were a handful in those days!

When I was a teenager, she worried and prayed over me and warned when it was necessary.  During my college days she would call me, and would constantly send me what I called "care packages."  They were filled with food mostly, and other necessities.  I have never had a birthday that she didn't write and send me something.  When I was married she cried, as well when I  told her about her first grandchild. 

Her influence on my life is immeasurable.  She never had a job outside the home, never ran a corporation, nor was voted one of the 10 most powerful women in America.  But she was there when we needed her.  The thing I remember most is that she always had time for us.  I love her dearly for that.  She was the heart of our home and tower of strength when needed.  She gave up much for her children, and we all (four boys, and one girl) rise up and call her blessed.

Her story is repeated over and over around this nation in the lives of good, godly mothers.  We, as your offspring, thank you mothers for your love, your labor, and your gift of life to us.

May God bless you "Moms" of America.

I'm looking forward to celebrating Mother's Day with you this Sunday!

Friday, May 2, 2014

Big Talkers Little Doers

Stretching the truth is uncommonly general now day.  People with good imaginations are not scarce at all.  Certain people are always on the prowl for gossip, and if they don't find it they invent it.  As one preacher said "All of their mole hills are mountains."  If they saw six dogs running together they would swear its was no less than 100!  The would also swear everyone else saw 100.  I hear these folks on airplanes as I travel.  Their wealth is enormous, they are extremely successful, and everyone else has problems but not them.
People are boastful these days.  Most of them are great talkers and little doers.  My dad used to say "Dogs that bark usually run away when it's time to bite."  In other words, saying and doing are two different things.  I've found over the years that the leanest pigs squeal the most.  One of the reasons a drum sounds so loud is the fact that there's nothing to them.
As a pastor of the same church for over thirty years, I've dealt with many different people.  I have observed when a man is excellent, he will as cream, soon rise to the top.
The Bible describes the backslider as one who is filled with his own ways.  The wise man Solomon said, "Even a fool is counted wise when he holdeth his peace."

As by the ears the mole is known,
A truth as Proverbs long have shown,
Is seen most plainly though his speech,
Let's glorify God, not ourselves.

See ya Sunday!